If asked about Nigerian snacks most people will mention refined biscuits, cakes, and cookies, however, these options are far from healthy as most are produced with preservatives, additives, and artificial flavors.
These refined snacks, when compared to locally made snacks, have a significantly smaller nutritional value and, in most cases, they are more expensive than locally made snacks.
This is why it is best to go for locally made snacks, that is, if you want to enjoy more health benefits and save up on spending.
Common Healthy Snacks in Nigeria
Puff-puff is a popular snack that is prepared with batter and vegetable oil. The snack is relatively easy to make. It also costs less to make or buy which is why it is quite popular in Nigeria. Puff-puff can also be served on special occasions like parties, wedding events, and seminars.
Chin-chin is another popular affordable snack produced in Nigeria. The general ingredients for making chin-chin is flour, evaporated milk, sugar, and vegetable oil. Depending on the type of chin-chin (if it is soft or crunchy chin chin) some ingredients are added or removed.
Whichever type of chin-chin you go for, you can rest assured that you’re consuming a healthy snack as the ingredients are completely natural.
Akara is one of the healthiest snacks to consume. It is a rich source of protein, vitamins, and antioxidants. It is made from beans, onions and vegetable oil. Akara can be consumed alone, however, most people prefer consuming it with other foods like bread or pap.
Meat pie is a staple snack that offers a lot of deliciousness. It is quite tasty, however, it is also expensive to make. This is due to the filling placed in between the dough. To make the perfect meat pie, the filling will have to be made of carrots, meat, onion, thyme, and many other seasonings just to get the taste right.
The dough is less expensive to make as all you will need is flour, baking powder, and margarine. While you might want to go cheap on the filling to save cost, you should know that most of the health benefits offered by this snack come from the filling.
The meat used is a great source of protein while the carrots offer vitamins like vitamin A which is important for eye health.
Corn is a great source of beneficial nutrients. It contains antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that aid in the proper functioning of the body. Corn is usually consumed roasted or cooked along with other edibles like coconut.
Plantain chips popularly known as kpekere are one of the healthiest snacks in Nigeria. They are quite easy to make and delicious in taste. To make plantain chips, all you need is the plantain, vegetable oil for frying and salt to boost the taste.
While you can easily fry the plantain and get the snack ready in no time, you will have to be an expert if you want your plantain chips to taste perfect.
Plantain chips have the same value as your normal plantain. They are an excellent source of fibre, vitamins, and minerals.
The addition of egg makes egg rolls one of the healthiest snack choices to go for. Eggs are a rich source of protein, vitamins, and minerals.
They offer a lot of benefits such as raising good cholesterol levels and improving hear health. They are packed with many vitamins that are necessary for many body functions.
To make eggs rolls, you’ll need flour, baking powder, eggs, and margarine. They are many recipes on making eggs rolls and they will all give you a delicious snack that offers many health benefits.
Peanuts are another popular snack option. They are usually consumed for their taste and not their nutritional value.
However, they do offer something more than just a satisfying taste. They are a great source of fibre, protein and healthful fats. They are rich in many beneficial vitamins especially B vitamins.
Peanuts are consumed boiled or roasted. While consuming, most people would break the skin and feed on the groundnut inside. However, peanut skin also has several beneficial properties such as antioxidants and fibre. You can go ahead and consume it whole without breaking off the skin.
Tiger nuts also known as Hausa groundnuts are popular snack choices in Nigeria. The nuts which are actually edible tubers are grown in the Northern part of Nigeria. They are eaten in almost every part of the country as they are one of the tastiest snacks you can come across.
Tiger nuts are rich in beneficial nutrients which could improve digestion, reduce blood sugar levels, improve heart health, and boost the immune system.
Boli is another snack option made from plantain. They are one of the most popular and tastiest snacks consumed in all parts of Nigeria. While kpekere is made by frying with oil, boli is made by roasting the plantain. Usually, there are not extra ingredients needed when making boli.
Boli is combined with many other foods and taken as a main meal. The most popular combination is boli and beans. You can also take boli as a snack by consuming it alone or with groundnut. Whichever one you go for, you’ll get a lot of health benefits as the snack is packed with beneficial nutrients.
Moin Moin is another healthy snack made from beans. It is sometimes called bean pie, however, most Nigerians know it as moin moin or moi moi. Moin moin and akara are made with similar ingredients. But the making process of moin moin is quite different.
Compared to Akara, moi moi can make you full faster. It can be combined with other foods, however, it is best consumed alone. Since it is made directly from beans, you will the same health benefits you get from consuming beans when you eat moi moi.
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